student resources

Academic Policies

Academic Policies

(Rev. May 2022)

Attending class and assigned workshops is essential for student success. Many instructors assign work that can only be completed in class, and absent or late students generally will not have the opportunity to make this work up. 

In some circumstances the Dean of Student Development Services will excuse absences and allow students to complete missed assignments. Typically these circumstances involve absences for sporting events, religious observation, pregnancy and childbirth, and activities protected by law. 

Students who stop attending a class after the first meeting period will be withdrawn from that class when the instructor submits attendance data at the third week mark. Faculty will not withdraw students after this point, and the responsibility to request a withdrawal from a class will rest with the individual student. 

Absences for Religious Reasons 

No person shall be expelled from or be refused admission as a student to an institution of higher education for the reason that he or she is unable, because of his or her religious beliefs, to attend classes or to participate in any examination, study or work requirements on a particular day or days. 

Any student in an institution of higher education who is unable, because of his or her religious beliefs, to attend classes on a particular day or days shall, because of such absence on the particular day or days, be excused from any examination or any study or work requirements. It shall be the responsibility of the faculty and of the administrative officials of each institution of higher education to make available to each student charged by the institution for making available to the said student such equivalent opportunity. If classes, examinations, study or work requirements are held on Friday after four o'clock PM or on Saturday, similar or makeup classes, examinations, study or work requirements shall be made available on other days, when it is possible and practicable to do so. No special fees shall be charged to the student for these classes, examinations, study or work requirements held on other days. 

In effectuating the provisions of this section, it shall be the duty of the faculty and of the administrative officials of each institution of higher education to exercise the fullest measure of good faith. No adverse or prejudicial effects shall result to any student because of his/her availing himself or herself of the provisions of this section. 

Any student, who is aggrieved by the alleged failure of any faculty or administrative officials to comply in good faith with provisions of this section, shall be entitled to maintain an action or proceeding in the Supreme Court of the county in which said institution of higher education is located for the enforcement of his or her rights under this section. 

As used in this section, the term "institution of higher education" shall mean schools under the control of the Board of Trustees of the State University of New York or the Board of Higher Education of the City of New York or any community college. 

Absences for Pregnancy & Childbirth 

Federal and state law protects women who are pregnant, or who have recently given birth. SUNY Sullivan will: 

  • Allow you to continue participating in classes and
    extracurricular activities even though you are
  • Excuse absences due to pregnancy or childbirth for as
    long as your doctor says it is necessary; and
  • Allow you to return to the same academic and
    extracurricular status as before your medical leave began, which should include giving you the opportunity to make up any work missed while you were out

 Absences for Athletic Events

College athletes work with their coaching staff and academic advisors to design class schedules that minimize disruption, but on those rare occasions when an athletic event conflicts with a class student athletes will have the opportunity to complete classwork without penalty.

 Absences Related to Inclement Weather

The college does not require students to commute to campus when the roads are not safe, and students who do not attend class during inclement weather are allowed to complete missed work without penalty.

The Academic Appeals Committee (hereafter referred to as the Committee) handles appeals regarding a course's final grade.

Individual Final Grade Appeals

In order to provide a means to seek and obtain redress for grievances affecting a student individually, the following procedures should be followed. These are not intended and shall not be used to provide sanctions against faculty members.

Where an individual student alleges, with particularity, that the actions of a faculty member have resulted in serious academic injury to the student, the matter shall be presented to the Academic Appeals Committee for adjudication in accordance with the following procedures. Serious academic injury includes, but is not necessarily limited to, the awarding of a lower course grade than that which the student has earned or suspension from a class.


It is the responsibility of the student, before seeking to have a grievance adjudicated, to attempt to resolve the matter by personal conference with the faculty member concerned. If this is unsuccessful, the student must communicate with the Division Dean for consideration and adjustment by informal means. The student is free to consult with any faculty or staff member if assistance is desired at any point in this process. (If a member of the Committee is interested in assisting a student or feels too close to the situation, then that Committee member will recuse himself/herself from the proceedings. If the matter remains unresolved after five (5) academic days after referral to the Division Dean has been made, the following grievance procedures shall be employed:

  1. The aggrieved student will file a written statement of the grievance to the Committee Chair, who will notify the Vice President for Academic and Student Affairs and the Division Dean. Normally, the Committee will not consider grievances after one full semester (e.g. if a grade was given in the Spring semester, the appeal should be filed prior to the end of the following Fall semester).
  2. Upon notification by the Committee Chair, the Division Dean will submit his/her written findings and judgment on the student’s grievance to the Committee Chair.
  3. The Committee Chair will send a copy of the grievance to the faculty member together with a copy of these regulations and a letter requesting a response from the faculty member. The letter to the faculty member shall also be sent to the student and the Division Dean. The faculty member will have five (5) academic days to respond to the Committee Chair.
  4. If clarification is needed, the Committee shall convene separate interviews with the student and the faculty member concerned within ten (10) academic days from receipt of the response from the faculty member or from when the response was due. Both parties have the right to the presence of a procedural advisor and/or an advocate. The Committee may consult with any other parties who may assist in its work to affect an adjustment. After consulting with the Vice President for Academic and Student Affairs regarding the Committee’s decision, the Committee Chair shall notify the student, the faculty member, and the Division Dean of that decision. Failure of the student to attend his/her interview may result in the grievance being dismissed with no further right to appeal.
  5. If the matter remains unresolved after all appropriate parties have been notified of the Committee’s decision, then either party may appeal to the Vice President for Academic and Student Affairs. The appealing party shall submit to the Vice President a formal statement which details reasons for continuation of the appeal. This statement must be received by the Office of the Vice President by the end of the fifth (5th) academic day after notification of the Committee’s decision. The Vice President will make an independent review of the hearing proceedings. After careful consideration of the Committee’s decision, the Vice President can agree with that decision, reduce the extent of remedial action to be taken, or dismiss the charges. If the Vice President believes remedial action may infringe upon the exercise of academic freedom, then the Vice President will seek an advisory opinion from the Academic Council before issuing a decision. The decision of the Vice President shall be in writing, may set forth any new findings of fact or remedies, and shall explain the reasons underlying his/her decision. This decision shall be transmitted to the Committee Chair.
  6. The Vice President for Academic and Student Affairs shall then transmit to the Committee Chair, the faculty member, the Division Dean, and the student copies of all actions affecting the student taken by the Committee and the Vice President. Suitable records shall be maintained as confidential and retained in the office of the Vice President. The decision of the Vice President in regard to student grade appeals is final. During vacations when involved persons may not be available, the Committee may gather information in written or electronic form. This information will be made available to both parties. If the Committee believes sufficient information has been received, they may issue a decision. Otherwise, the matter may be deferred to the beginning of a regular semester.

Remedial Action

Remedies on a student’s behalf should usually be those agreed to willingly by the faculty member. Other remedial actions to benefit a student may be authorized by the Vice President for Academic and Student Affairs only upon recommendation of the Committee. These actions are limited to: allowing a student to repeat an examination, allowing a student to be evaluated for work that would otherwise be too late to be considered, directing that additional opportunities be afforded for consultation or instruction, elimination of a grade that had been assigned by a faculty member from the transcript, changing of a passing letter or numerical grade to a “pass” or “satisfactory” grade so as not to adversely affect a student’s grade average, or allowing a student to repeat a course without penalty, schedule and program permitting. If some action is contemplated that might be deemed to infringe upon the academic freedom of the faculty member, the Vice President will seek an advisory opinion from the Academic Council. In such cases, the Vice President may identify other acceptable remedies or render such advice as may be appropriate in the particular situation.

No action detrimental to the faculty member will be taken, except as in strict accordance with established College procedures. An adjustment hereunder in the student’s behalf shall not be deemed a determination that the faculty member was in any way negligent or derelict.


It is the responsibility of all parties, including administrative officers, to take prompt action in order that grievances may be resolved quickly and fairly. While no explicit time limit could apply to all cases, failure to use diligence in seeking redress may constitute grounds for denial of a hearing or other relief, especially if prejudice results.

Good Academic Standing

Students who have achieved both Term and Career Grade Point Averages of 2.0 or higher at the College are considered to be in good academic standing.

Poor Academic Standing

Students who have achieved less than a 2.0 term or career GPA at the College will be placed on Poor Academic Standing (formerly known as probation). Students will be considered At Risk or placed on Academic Warning based on the following criteria:

At Risk Students who have a Term GPA of less than 2.0 are academically at risk. 

At risk students must meet with an advisor and will not be registered for more than 16 credit hours in a semester. At risk students will complete a plan of action designed to identify the types of support that are needed to improve grade performance.

Academic Warning

Students who have a Career GPA (regardless of their term GPA) of less than 2.0 are placed on Academic Warning. These students will be assigned a mentor who will provide intrusive advising designed to support the student’s success. Academic Warning students will not be registered for more than 16 credit hours in a semester, and will complete a plan of action designed to identify the types of support that are needed to improve grade performance.

Please see tuition and fees.

Cheating and plagiarism are serious violations in the academic community. Such acts interfere with the ability of instructors to teach and of students to learn, and therefore these acts are directly discordant with the goals of education. Students found guilty of violations of academic integrity will be penalized accordingly.

Academic Dishonesty includes, but is not limited to the following:

  1. Use of any unauthorized assistance In any assignments. 
  2. The acquisition or use of aids and/ or sources beyond
    those authorized by the instructor, including but not limited to the following:
    • Test bank material.
    • Tests, quizzes, or answer keys.
    • Other academic material belonging to a member of the College faculty or staff. 
  3. Plagiarism, which includes the use, by paraphrase or direct quotation, of the published or unpublished work of another person or agency without clear acknowledgment. 
  4. Sabotage of another’s academic work. 
  5. Facilitation of academic dishonesty, including but
    not limited to giving a student unauthorized aid, providing work to another student, providing test answers to another student, or taking an exam or doing an assignment for another student. 
  6. Alteration and resubmission, without permission, of an academic work (paper, test, quiz, for example) after it has been graded. 
  7. Submitting papers written by another person or persons;
  8. Buying, selling, inquiring, soliciting, downloading or exchanging
  9. term papers, examinations or other written assignments, or any part of them;

Academic Dishonesty will be penalized in the following manner:

  1. The course instructor shall investigate instances of suspected academic dishonesty; the instructor may ask the Dean of the Division for help determining if an act of academic dishonesty has taken place; the instructor may decide that a student is responsible for academic dishonesty and assign an appropriate penalty. Appropriate penalties may include the following: a warning; a resubmission of the work in question; a reduced grade or failure of the work in question; failure of the entire course.
  2. A student assigned a penalty of failure of the entire course may not withdraw from the course.
  3. All divisions will report acts of academic dishonesty to the Office of the Vice President for Academic and Student Affairs, using the format designated by that office. Students who commit numerous or egregious acts of academic dishonesty may be suspended or expelled at the discretion of the Vice President for Academic and Student Affairs in consultation with the Deans of all Divisions. Final appeals of those sanctions may go to the President.
  4. A student who facilitates academic dishonesty while not enrolled in the course in which the academic dishonesty took place will be referred to the Vice President for Academic and Student Affairs for appropriate sanctions.

Academic Dishonesty Appeal Procedure

  1. Students may appeal an instructor’s decision to the Dean of the Division, within five business days of the assigning of a penalty. During the course of an inquiry, the student retains any and all existing privileges until the matter has been resolved. If the instructor who brings the charges is the Dean of the Division, then the appeal will go to the Vice President for Academic and Student Affairs. Final appeals of the Dean’s decision may go to the Vice President for Academic and Student Affairs in consultation with the Deans of all Divisions.
  2. If a student is found responsible for academic dishonesty, the Dean or Vice President for Academic and Student Affairs may not change any grade penalty for a course, as long as it is within the guidelines of the course outline.
  3. Students may not use the determination of academic dishonesty as a basis for appealing a final grade to the Academic Appeal Committee on the Standing of Students and Academic Appeal.


Faculty and Staff – other than the instructor of a class – are not authorized to ask a student to leave a classroom except the following: a member of public safety, a counselor, or the College nurse if they are removing a student for safety reasons and if they have shown appropriate identification. If anyone else wishes to remove a student from a class, they must make appropriate arrangements with the instructor of the class. Instructors may ask a student to leave their classroom if they have violated policies in a course outline that warrant such removal.

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